"Jacare" is moving up the middleweight ladder. | Gleidson Venga/Sherdog.com
Ronaldo Souza is a man with a plan.
The former ADCC and World Jiu-Jitsu champion did not mince words when asked about his title aspirations following his unanimous decision victory over Francis Carmont in the UFC Fight Night 36 co-headliner at Arena Jaragua in Jaragua do Sul, Brazil.
“Jacare” wants to face the winner of Chris Weidman’s upcoming UFC 173 title defense against Vitor Belfort. However, should the UFC require him to earn another victory before he is given the coveted crack at gold, then so be it.
“Absolutely, I deserve [a title shot],” Souza told Fox Sports, “but if the UFC doesn’t think so, I will be happy to do it again.”
Souza dominated Carmont in the opening round of their middleweight co-main event, catching the Canadian’s back early in the frame and riding him while threatening with a rear-naked choke. Carmont then put forth a much better effort in the second stanza, keeping the fight vertical and exchanging punches with the powerful Brazilian. The third round clearly belonged to Souza, who once again took Carmont’s back and tried to lock up a fight-ending submission.
It was not to be, however, as “Limitless” survived to hear the final horn. Nevertheless, Souza was declared the victor, earning his sixth consecutive victory at the expense of Carmont’s 11-fight winning streak.
“I’m very happy with my performance. I knew he was a tough fighter, and it was a difficult fight. I actually engaged quite well in some of my submissions, but he was able to [escape],” said Souza. “He may have defended, but he had to stay there or tap out [unless] time ran out. I maintained dominant position.”